All Blog Entries

  1. Culinary Byte$

    Many would-be restaurant entrepreneurs wrongfully fear failure due to lack of experience in the food service business, and bankers’ err when citing false statistics such as the fabled, “90% of restaurants fail in the first year due to inexperience”. Really? Not so according to surveys published by Cornell University, the University of Tennessee and UCF Rosen College of Hospitality Management. According to their surveys, the failure rate for an independent restaurant is no different from any other ...
    Categories
    small business
  2. Are The Demographics Right?

    I spent three years looking for just the right location to start my next venture. At every property showing, I was asked by the realtor, “What kind of a restaurant are you planning to open?” To which my response was always, “one that meets the expectations of the consumer demographics.” That was usually the end of the questioning by the realtor and the conversation as well.

    According to the Rosen Hospitality Management survey of why restaurants fail, wrong demographics was right ...
    Categories
    small business
  3. Front of the House: Taj Mahal Syndrome

    First time restaurant entrepreneurs are often mistakenly under the impression that making the front of the house look like the Taj Mahal will somehow bring more customers and result in higher revenue. That may be the case in a billion dollar Las Vegas casino, but not so in an independent restaurant venture. It is a classic example of “pride goes before the fall”. Yes, your family and friends will be impressed, but it is not your family and friends who will fill the seats every day, providing ...
    Categories
    small business
  4. Restaurants: The power of the plate

    It was several decades ago that Chef Alice Waters introduced the concept of using natural, locally grown ingredients in all of her menu items in one single restaurant in California, a restaurant known as Chez Panisse. From one Chef with an idea and a passion for fresh ingredients came a whole new cuisine, California cuisine, still popular today for it’s abundance of fresh, locally caught or grown, and simply prepared ingredients. Fast forward to 2000 and there is Chef Jamie Oliver who has made ...
    Categories
    small business
  5. How Much Capital Do I Need?

    Reason #1 for failure of a restaurant is undercapitalization. That can mean anything from not having enough funds to complete the start up phase required to open, to insufficient reserve to provide funds for operating costs until profitable. As a culinary instructor in a prestigious Charleston college, I was always taken back when my culinary students answered the question, how are you going to fund your restaurant, with the response, “my parents are going to help me”. What? How much is the rent? ...
    Categories
    small business
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